As UUs who affirm the inherent worth and dignity of every person, we believe that every person deserves a safe place to live.  We find it tragic that more than 300,000 people arrive at the US border each year from countries around the world to ask for legal asylum because they are facing violence and persecution due to race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion.

Warsan Shire, a London-based, Kenyan born Somali poet and asylee, says in her poem “Home”:

“. . . no one leaves home unless home is the mouth of a shark. . .  you only leave home when home won’t let you stay . . .”

Asylum seekers arrive at our US border after a long and dangerous journey.  They are granted provisional legal status after establishing a “credible fear” of violence or death if they were to return to their own country.  They then must wait for a court hearing to determine if they can stay or not.  Because of the huge backlog in our court system, many asylum seekers – including children, toddlers, pregnant women, and ill persons – are put into detention to await their immigration case court date, even though they have committed no crime.  When a sponsor comes forward, the asylum seeker can be released from detention and stay with their sponsor.

The Racine Interfaith Coalition’s Immigration Task Force is working with Olympia Brown Unitarian Universalist (OBUUC) Church to support an asylum seeker or family until their immigration status is determined.  OBUUC has already identified the legal sponsor who will petition for the release from detention.

Funds are needed for food, clothing, transportation, education, healthcare, and legal expenses. We estimate that for the first 12 months, as much as $20,000 may be needed for these expenses.  We invite you to join us, with your financial support. Together we can make a difference!

 

Please Donate What You Can

 

Donate Online Here

 

OR mail a check to OBUUC Annex, 419 6th Street, Racine, WI  53403,
payable to OBUUC and with the designation
“OBUUC Asylum Fund” in the memo line.

 

Would you consider welcoming an asylum seeker to live with you?  Will you help with the work to prepare for the arrival or the on-going support of the asylum seeker?  Please contact Naoki Nakamura at naokin33@gmail.com.  We welcome your help in administrative tasks, gathering in-kind donations, shopping for necessities, providing food, providing transportation to medical and legal appointments, and perhaps even childcare.

 

“Sharing the Journey” Diane Lange, Chair, OBUUC Social Justice Committee

 

 

View the Congregational Accompaniment Project for Asylum Seekers (CAPAS) – Handbook for Congregations”, Fall 2019 here.